Economic impact “just as devastating” as the virus in Lafayette

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LAFAYETTE, La. — The Lafayette Consolidated Government is telling everyone who is feeling the economic impact of the coronavirus to take action.

The Lafayette Economic Development Authority has put together a website just for those dealing with the financial struggles of COVID-19. It’s lafayette.org/covid.

“In many ways, the economic impacts of this public health emergency are just as devastating as the virus itself”, said Lafayette Mayor-President Josh Guillory in Wednesday’s press conference.

He said Lafayette Parish is seeing historic levels of unemployment. Last week (March 15-21) 3,400 people filed new unemployment claims in the parish.

“We have been hit by a real double whammy”, explained Lafayette Economic Development Authority CEO and President Gregg Gothreaux. “The price of oil is below 1986, and this COVID, coronavirus situation just makes it that much worse, and so our area is devastated by these two world circumstances”.

Employees, business owners, and the unemployed can find resources to make it through at lafayette.org/covid. If you’ve lost your job, you can find a list of hiring businesses or see if you are eligible for unemployment. Businesses can find details on tax relief and loans, but don’t wait to start.

“If we don’t act now, we may be left behind”, urged Guillory. “If you’re out there and you’ve lost your job or you’re a business owner and you’re trying to make payroll or you did make payroll and it’s put you in significant financial distress, go to the website.”

Any questions you have can be submitted to the site. Leaders say in addition to doing everything we can to reduce the health risk of the coronavirus, we need to be proactive in reducing the economic fallout.

“None of this happens overnight. Act now”, said Gothreaux.

Guillory added, “You have nothing to lose and a lot to gain. We can get through this, but we have to take advantage of the benefits that are being provided to us.”

Lafayette.org/covid will continue to be updated as more information is learned about the federal stimulus packages as well as dates for other economic aid coming to workers and businesses.

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